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Jul 16, 2015

Title fight intensifies via stunning Collins victory

HAVING LOST the lead of the Australian Formula 3 Championship following Ricky Capo’s victory in race one on Saturday, it didn’t take long for Sydneysider Jon Collins to return to the top of the standings today at Sydney Motorsport Park. 

The home-town hero led every lap of Sunday’s 14-lap feature race to reassert himself – if only narrowly – at the top of the compelling title fight for Australia’s fastest racing car championship he’s having with Ricky Capo this season. 

He now leads Capo 157-154 points with racing at Queensland Raceway, Phillip Island and Wakefield Park to come.

Collins was aided in his quest to win his home round by National class racer Dennie Rumble, who rocketed from the third row of the grid to second place on the opening lap – delaying Capo’s chase of pole man Collins. 

Capo chased hard once he was clear of the pack but couldn’t close to more than a second of the race leader, ultimately settling for second place. The Jani-King racing driver did, however, set the fastest lap to claw one valuable championship marker out of Collins' in the more heavily-weighted finale'. 

It was Collins’ second win of the day as he won the sprint race held earlier in the morning, holding out Capo and Legge. Capo also set the fastest lap in race two, scoring another bonus point. 

Roland Legge finished a quiet third in his return for R-Tek Motorsport, though in race two he raced with the leaders and lapped at near identical pace to the dueling championship pair.

Luke Spalding won the Formula 3 National Class. Shane Wilson won the Kumho Cup class. 

Luke Ellery finished fourth overall on his Formula 3 Championship debut, though his feature race performance was marred by an incident early that dropped him down the pack and out of touch with the leaders. 

He charged through the field to fourth place in the feature, mirroring the result he achieved in race two from the back of the field earlier in the morning. 

The Australian Formula 3 Championship return at Queensland Raceway in August. 

Saturday Wrap

RICKY CAPO wrestled the lead of the Australian Formula 3 Championship back from Jon Collins by winning race one at Sydney Motorsport Park, in a highly-competitive day for the wings and slicks category.

Capo took pole by the third-closest margin in F3 Championship history – and the closest of the Shannons Nationals year – of 0.0035s before taking advantage of Collins stalling at the line to take the first race of the weekend ahead of Roland Legge.

Collins, who started from second but dropped to last on the opening lap, stormed through the field and set the fastest lap on his charge to third place.

The results see Capo handed a three-point title lead ahead of Sunday’s pair of races that complete the round.

Luke Spalding won the F3 National class and finished a solid fourth outright.

Luke Ellery’s Formula 3 debut lasted only the formation lap as his car broke a bolt in the clutch pedal just prior to the race start.

The drama saw the start delayed and two laps cut from the scheduled distance as the original start was aborted and the field re-set whilst his car was recovered.